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[Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents]

[Page i-ii]
Monday, September 8, 1997
Volume 33--Number 36
Pages 1273-1289

[[Page i]]

Weekly Compilation of



[[Page ii]]

Addresses and Remarks

        Martha's Vineyard
            Death of Princess Diana--1276
            Terrorist attack in Jerusalem--1283
            Women's National Basketball Association, telephone 
                conversations with the Houston Comets and New York 
        Oak Bluffs School teachers in Oak Bluffs--1276
    Radio address--1273

Communications to Congress

    Federal Labor Relations Authority, message transmitting report--1284
    Partnership For Peace, letter transmitting report--1280
    Treaties on legal assistance in criminal matters
          and documentation
        Barbados-U.S., message transmitting--2182
        Inter-American convention and protocol, message transmitting--
        Organization of Eastern Caribbean States-U.S., message 

Communications to Congress--Continued

    Treaties on legal assistance in criminal matters
          and documentation--Continued
        Trinidad/Tobago-U.S., message transmitting--1283
    U.S. Government activities in the United Nations, message 
        transmitting report--1284

Interviews With the News Media

    Exchanges with reporters in Martha's Vineyard, MA--1276, 1283

Statements by the President

    Death of Mother Teresa--1285

Supplementary Materials

    Acts approved by the President--1289
    Checklist of White House press releases--1289
    Digest of other White House announcements--1285
    Nominations submitted to the Senate--1286

Editor's Note: The President was in Martha's Vineyard, MA, on September 
5, the closing date of this issue. Releases and announcements issued by 
the Office of the Press Secretary but not received in time for inclusion 
in this issue will be printed next week.


Published every Monday by the Office of the Federal Register, National 
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Compilation of Presidential Documents contains statements, messages, and
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[[Page 1273]]

[Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents]

[Page 1273-1274]
Monday, September 8, 1997
Volume 33--Number 36
Pages 1273-1289
Week Ending Friday, September 5, 1997
The President's Radio Address

August 30, 1997

    Good morning. This week a record number of American children will be 
heading back to school, reminding us of our greatest obligation, to 
prepare our children for the 21st century. We can't do that without a 
commitment to educational excellence for all those children, expecting 
them to meet high standards and testing to see if they do.
    In my State of the Union Address, I challenged every State to adopt 
high national standards of academic excellence, defining what every 
child should learn, and by 1999, to join in a national test for all 
fourth graders in reading and all eighth graders in math, to ensure they 
have mastered these basics.
    We know that challenging our students to achieve excellence works. 
This week, the College Board announced that SAT math scores continue to 
rise; and today, the National Assessment for Education Progress, the 
organization that issues what we call the Nation's report card, 
announced that in recent years we have improved math and science 
performance at every age level. Most exciting, more high schoolers are 
taking challenging courses and college-level courses.
    Still, we all know we have more to do to improve our schools and to 
raise learning levels for all of our students. I've been working to 
improve education for nearly 20 years now, and I am convinced we can 
give our children the education they need to thrive in the 21st century 
only by setting high standards and by challenging students, teachers, 
parents, and principals to meet them. National standards will help us to 
upgrade curricula, improve teaching, and target students and schools who 
need assistance.
    I'm pleased that Governors and mayors from all over the country, 
business leaders and educators from States and cities, big and small, 
people of both parties, are joining in this effort. We're working to 
make sure this doesn't become a partisan issue.
    Some people worry that the Federal Government would play too large a 
role in developing the test. To meet that concern, I have instructed my 
staff to rewrite our proposal to make sure these tests are developed not 
by the Department of Education but by an independent, bipartisan board 
created by Congress many years ago. This will make sure these tests 
measure what they should, nothing more, nothing less.
    Still, there are some in Congress who, even as our children are 
heading back to school, are working to undermine the very progress in 
education our children are counting on. They have proposed an amendment 
that would prevent us from developing a common test for math and reading 
and, therefore, would prevent your school district or your State or your 
child from choosing to take the test. That means you won't be able to 
find out if your child's school is meeting world-class standards.
    The arguments they're using are the very same ones we've heard for 
years now. They amount to a determination to avoid accountability. Some 
say we shouldn't pay for test development even though it's being done by 
an independent body. Some say the test will be misused, even though 
participation is voluntary and is clearly designed to show how students 
and schools are doing and to show the way toward improving them.
    Some say it's unfair to poor kids and kids of immigrant parents, 
even though many big-city school districts, including those in six of 
seven of our largest cities, say they want to be a part of the test and 
the national standards movement even if their States don't.
    The fact is high standards are essential to providing our children 
the best education in the world, and I intend to do whatever is 
necessary to make sure we move forward.
    The 21st century will be a time of remarkable opportunity. With high 
national edu

[[Page 1274]]

cation standards, we can make sure all our children have the education 
they need to seize these opportunities. Without them, our children will 
continue to pay for our own low expectations and our own limited vision 
for them. Our children, our schools, our future are far too important to 
be anything less than world class. Let us move forward into the 21st 
century with high standards, and make sure we meet them.

Note: The address was recorded at 6:04 p.m. on August 29 at a private 
residence at Martha's Vineyard, MA, for broadcast at 10:06 a.m. on 
August 30.

[Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents]

[Page 1274]
Monday, September 8, 1997
Volume 33--Number 36
Pages 1273-1289
Week Ending Friday, September 5, 1997
Remarks in a Telephone Conversation With the WNBA Champion Houston 
Comets From Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts

August 30, 1997

    Coach Van Chancellor. Mr. President?
    The President. Coach, congratulations.
    Coach Chancellor. Well, thank you very much. You know, we're from 
neighboring States. I'm a Mississippi boy.
    The President. You are?
    Coach Chancellor. Yes, I am.
    The President. Well, double congratulations.
    Coach Chancellor. Well, thank you very much.
    The President. I'll tell you what, I've followed the season this 
year. I've watched several games on television. I've really enjoyed it, 
and I had a chance to get to know some of the players in the league when 
I went running with the Women's Olympic Team a couple of years ago, and 
I think it's just been a great thing. I hope it'll be a success and go 
forward, and you had a great season and a great team, and you had a good 
game tonight.
    Coach Chancellor. Well, thank you very much. I do appreciate you 
taking the time to call our locker room. That means a lot to the women 
of this team and to this coaching staff.
    The President. Can you hear me?
    Coach Chancellor. Yes, I can hear you.
    The President. We're on a cell phone, but I think we're doing all 
right. I can hear you fine.
    Coach Chancellor. Yes. I do appreciate your support of women's 
athletics in general.
    The President. Well, I'm strongly supportive of it, and I hope 
that--like I said, I want you to stay with it, and I'll be supporting 
you all the way, and congratulate the players for me.
    Coach Chancellor. I will. They're all in the dressing room, and they 
will be honored that you have called us.
    The President. Cynthia had a great game, and any of us who has ever 
been through a childbirth were awful impressed when Sheryl Swoopes came 
back to play so quickly.
    Coach Chancellor. Yes. I'm amazed that she was able to have a child 
and come back and play for us. She just had some great games. This has 
just been a total team effort for us.
    The President. Yes. Well, give them my best, and I hope to see you 
up here someday pretty soon.
    Coach Chancellor. Okay. I would love to come up there.
    The President. Thank you, Van.
    Coach Chancellor. And thank you very much for calling us. I'm very 
    The President. Bye-bye.

Note: The President spoke by satellite at 6:50 p.m. from a private 
residence. In his remarks, he referred to players Cynthia Cooper, and 
Sheryl Swoopes, Houston Comets.

[Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents]

[Page 1274-1276]
Monday, September 8, 1997
Volume 33--Number 36
Pages 1273-1289
Week Ending Friday, September 5, 1997
Remarks in a Telephone Conversation With the WNBA Second Place New York 
Liberty From Martha's Vineyard

August 30, 1997

    The President. Hello?
    Ms. Maureen Coyle. We have a couple of people here who want to say 
hi to you.
    The President. Oh, great. Congratulations on your season.
    Team members. Thank you!

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